Volunteer lifeguards? Given the current economic situation, that may not be too far off the mark. In Albermarle County, Va., officials have recruited volunteers and jail inmates to help care for public parks. According to reports, volunteers are helping build a trail network, and due to budget constraints the project would not be completed without their help.

The same is true in Des Moines, Iowa. City leaders there established a volunteer program in which locals pitch in to help maintain local cemeteries. Recently, they held an open house to attract new volunteers.